New Defender's Study Bible Notes
4:6 out of darkness. Paul here draws a beautiful analogy of our new creation in Christ to His primeval creation of the world. Both the world and we were initially born in darkness—we in spiritual darkness, through innate sin, and the world in physical darkness (Genesis 1:2). Then, as God called for physical light to “divide” the darkness (Genesis 1:3-5), so He has divided the darkness in our hearts, by the spiritual illumination of Him who is “the light of the world” (John 8:12). Yet, just as there continues to be a “conflict” between day and night, as it were, so there continues a battle in our souls between the old darkness and the new light. In the age to come, however, “there shall be no night there” (Revelation 21:25), and thenceforth we always “shall walk in the light of it” (Revelation 21:24), having been made “like Him; for we shall see Him as He is” (I John 3:2).
4:8 yet not distressed. There are at least five divine paradoxes of grace mentioned in II Corinthians 4:8-10—troubled but not distressed, perplexed but not despairing, persecuted but not abandoned, cast down but not destroyed, dying in Jesus yet alive in Him. Compare these to the nine similar paradoxes in II Corinthians 6:8-10. See note on II Corinthians 6:4.
4:13 as it is written. See Psalm 116:10. The comfort of the psalmist in his afflictions was faith in God’s Word, and Paul testified the same of himself.
4:17 light affliction. Paul’s afflictions were hardly “light” by human standards (e.g., II Corinthians 11:23-33). These were only momentary, however, in the scales of eternity, and were “light” in comparison to the “weight” of glory yet to come (Romans 8:18).
4:17 but for a moment. The word here for “moment” is parautikos, meaning “at present.” Compare Luke 4:5; I Corinthians 15:52.